NSW Inquiry In Aged Care

4 Jul 2015 10:07 AMLicensee Person
NSW Inquiry In Aged Care

There's an NSW parliamentary inquiry into nurse staffing levels. Victoria legislates nurse-to-resident ratios in state-owned aged care facilities. Learn more.

NSW inquiry launched into staffing in aged care

A NSW parliamentary inquiry into nurse staffing levels, begun in July, may have some interesting flow on effects for AIN’s in the future.

NSW is currently the only state to stipulate a registered nurse on every shift in a high care facility, but soon Victoria will be to first state to go one step further and legislate nurse-to-resident ratios in state-owned aged care facilities. There are 185 throughout Victoria.

The legislation is yet to be passed, however, the ratios being suggested by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Association  (Vic).are; one nurse for every seven residents plus a nurse in charge on morning shifts; one nurse for every eight residents plus a nurse in charge on afternoon shifts; and one nurse for every 15 residents on the evening shift.

Higher staff ratios could go a long way to minimising resident falls, improve resident wellbeing and reduce stress on the AIN’s who currently may care for up to 15 residents.

Whether this legislation will be adopted by private owned ACF’s in Victoria is still to be seen.

Flow on effects , if the ratios are not adopted, are higher qualifications required for AIN’s. This may mean more training in medications and wound dressings and clinical observations and a move to Certificate 4 training instead of just the Certificate 3 .Pay rates may or may not change in the private sector.

Aged Care Employer peak bodies argue that the federal accreditation already regulates nurse staffing and that rural area ACF’s would be affected in a negative way. However, this would be a boon for rural AIN’s as there may be a higher demand for them and they would not have to move to the city to gain work.

See full article here  http://www.australianageingagenda.com.au/2015/07/01/nsw-inquiry-launched-into-staffing-in-aged-care/